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CL News and Notes: December 11, 2011

by on Dec.12, 2011 @ 12:32 am, under NPB

Chunichi Dragons

Hirokazu Ibata will be using a 940 gram (up 40 grams) bat next season.  He also plans to use a 1kg bat during his winter practices.

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Takeshi Yamasaki held a baseball clinic at Bell Sun Pia Miyagi Izumi in Miyagi on Saturday.  It was part of Mizuno's Victory Clinic Baseball Basics Baseball Festival program.

Yamasaki participated in a talk session with Kosuke Fukudome at the Chukyo Race Course in Nagoya on Sunday.

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About 50 fans attended an event for kids that was hosted by Kazuhiro Wada on Saturday.

Wada will be in the second year of a three-year deal next season and hinted that if he can not pull things together, he may have to consider retirement, although he did say his goal was to his 30 homers.  He also said he did not have any plans to return to his old batting mechanics -- Wada spent this season adjusting to a more square stance (something Hiromitsu Ochiai suggested).

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Batting coach Kazuki Inoue has two ideas that might help improve the team's offense next season: work on developing the next wave of talent and get hitters to think more about pitch patterns.

Hanshin Tigers

Minoru Iwata and aerobics athlete Eiichi Omura participated in a talk session on Sunday in Osaka.  About 200 people attended.

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Tomoaki Kanemoto, Shinobu Fukhara, Ryota Arai, Hiroki Uemoto, and Shunsuke attended a Koryo High School baseball team 100th anniversary celebration on Sunday.

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Kohei Shibata, Shinji Komiyama, and Naoto Tsuru were guests at Festa In Itami on Saturday.  About 400 fans attended the event.

Shibata, Komiyama, Kentaro Sekimoto, and Atsushi Nomi will be working out together in January.

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The Tigers are considering ideas for merchandise tied into Yutaka Wada's team slogan, "Go for the Top, Atsukunare!"

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Tsuyoshi Shimoyanagi worked out at the Naruohama training facilities on Saturday and told reporters that he has not received any offers.

Yomiuri Giants

The Yomiuri Giants will be auctioning off 67 autographed uniforms: 23 player uniforms between 12/11 and 12/18; 22 player uniforms between 12/19 and 12/26; and 22 player uniforms between 1/10 and 1/17.  Proceeds will go toward relief efforts in northern Japan.

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Hayato Sakamoto participated in a youth baseball clinic for 70 kids in Towada, Aomori on Sunday.  The session lasted about four hours.

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Tatsunori Hara is thinking about giving Ryosuke Miyaguni an exhibition game start on 2/25 against the Yokohama Bay Stars.

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Shun Tono plans to start throwing his shuto again next season as a pitch to help set up his slider.

Yakult Swallows

General coach Takao Ise told reporters on Saturday that he wanted to improve player stamina levels by making them run during spring camp -- one hour every day and an extra 30 minutes before extra BP (no batting practice unless you run).  He also plans to extend the 30 minutes of running before BP to the regular season.

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Kentaro Kyuko and his wife held a wedding ceremony in Tokyo on Saturday.  About 130 people attended the ceremony.

Kyuko had surgery to correct a blow flow problem in his left hand on 11/21.  He just recent started running again on 12/7.

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Tsubakuro is scheduled to meet with the team for salary negotiations on 12/21.  On Saturday, Tsubakuro was a "station bird" for the day at Tochomae Station.  About 1,000 fans attended his appointment ceremony.

Hiroshima Carp

Yoshihiro Maru and Ryuhei Matsuyama participated in a talk session at JRA WINS Hiroshima on Sunday.

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Yuya Fukui apparently splits the strike zone into three vertical sections: outside, middle, inside.

Yokohama Bay Stars

The media learned that the Yokohama Bay Stars will be playing  their first exhibition game of the year against the Yomiuri Giants at Okinawa Cellular Stadium on 2/25/2012.